The Christians + The Pagans
As we slowly creep into colder weather and shorter days, my heart starts to flutter at the anticipation of the holidays. I know it may feel way too early to start thinking about Christmas, but if you’re anything like me, you love the holiday season, have incredible intentions to wrap it with stress free, feminine, generous love, but when you’re actually “in it”, you feel just the opposite.
It’s sad that the most magical time of year always turns into a total sh*t show. I’m here today to give you an invitation to do things differently this year, so the holidays can be every drop of deliciousness you remembered when you were a child. And it all starts with giving yourself plenty of time to be intentional (which is why I’m bringing this up before Halloween).
Winter is a sacred time of stillness and space. Seeds have been gathered in the soil and wait to bloom in spring. Animals are hibernating. The days are shorter. The energy of the earth is clearly telling us that it is a time for resting, drinking tea by the fire and gathering energy for the season ahead. And yet we’re all running around like chickens with our heads cut off at the mall expending more energy than we do all year! No bueno.
For years I celebrated “Crazy Christmas”. I waited to buy presents last minute, stressed out about the wrapping and was always thinking of those dumb non-presents like “breakfast in bed” or “a dinner out on me!” just because I didn’t know what to buy someone and was so unorganized. I always felt stressed, guilty, embarrassed, exhausted and chubby (christmas cookies were the only way to ground myself from the buzz).
But when I became a mother, I knew I wanted to be intentional about what the holidays were like in our house, and I sought out inspiration and support from my dear friend Becca Piastrelli to craft a sacred and grounded holiday tradition. Becca (aka the Dabblist) and founder of a Handmade Holiday brings me homemade cordials and love potions as hostess gifts. She brews me cinnamon rose tea she blended herself when I visit her. She gathers women on the full moons, teaches rituals and leads ceremonies. She’s really a modern day witch, and I just love her so much!
So for the past two years, Becca and I have gathered in November to plan out our holiday schedules, meals and gifts. We infuse every plan with an intention and give everything plenty of space to be brought to fruition with creativity and ease.
Then we gather again to make our Christmas and Hanukkah gifts in early December. Now, this gathering is the opposite of Santa’s sweatshop. We aren’t there to just throw things together and check people off of our list, we create sacred space and make gifts with love and intention.
Last year, I created a similar gift making day for Marshall (though it only lasted about twenty minutes) where we made (lukewarm) tea, lit candles and painted ornaments and I told him what I loved about each person he was making the ornament for as he painted. It was so sweet.
Let me be clear about something, this does not come naturally to me. I am not “crafty”, I trend toward the neurotic end of the spectrum and I’m a recovering perfectionist. Trying to make a dreamcatcher for Marshall nearly gave me a hernia because it was just so ugly. But creating a sacred holiday season isn’t about being crafty, perfect or productive. It’s about slowing down, creating sacred space and having a PLAN.
Are you hooked? I’m glad. There’s no going back once you know how juicy, feminine and divine the holidays can be.
Becca is hosting a sacred women’s gathering on November 3rd to plan for the holiday season so you aren’t last minute, stressed out or a complete sh*t show. She’s going to walk us through setting our own intention for the holiday season, help us get clear on who we’re giving gifts to this year (right down to the mailman) and how we want each person to feel. She’ll be teaching us rituals for the winter months, and incredible gifting resources and ideas. I’ll be there with bells on and I’d love for you to join me.
This year Jonathan and I are hosting a Jenksbord Christmakkah! Both of our families, the Brajtbords and the Jenks will be gathering at our home to eat latkes and open presents under the Christmas Tree. There will be 13 of us in total which could end up being a ton of work for me, which is why I am so committed to this work this year.
I can’t wait to see you on November 3rd at Becca’s virtual women’s gathering.
All photos by Rosa Delgado Photography
Simple actions to take your life back, know your worth & feel alive no matter how drained, overwhelmed and far gone you feel.